Nicola Sturgeon announces review of Scots 2-metre distancing rule as lockdown eased

Nicola Sturgeon has announced a review of the 2 metre social distancing restriction in Scotland amid calls from the hospitality industry for it to be halved.

The First Minister revealed she has sought fresh scientific advice on the issue and will receive a report ahead the planned restart of the country's tourism industry in mid-July.

The move was welcomed by business leaders who say the measure must be relaxed for many hospitality firms and shops to remain viable.

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The Scottish Government’s Advisory Group on physical distancing requirements is to conduct the review.

"I will not change this guidance without rigorous consideration and appropriate assurance," Ms Sturgeon told MSPs today.

"However, I have asked our advisers to consider whether there are particular settings and circumstances in which, with additional mitigations, it might be possible in future to recommend a distance of 1 or 1.5 metres.

"I hope to also have this advice within two weeks and will report on it then."

Nicola Sturgeon has asked for the 2metre distancing rule to be looked at again

At the moment, the strict two metre rule remains in force.

Liz Cameron, chief executive of the Scottish Chambers of Commerce welcomed the move.

"Clearly current physical distancing limits at 2m is unsustainable for many businesses so we welcome the fact that this is being reviewed, with recommendations due within the next 2 weeks," she said.

"We would suggest that the review be extended to consider the scientific evidence as adopted by many other countries together with the advice from the World Health Organisation.

"We all know that science can never be exact so it is important that a broader analysis and view is sought from others before final decisions are taken."

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